Bethesda appeared to be mocking itself during its E3 2018 conference with its trailer for Skyrim: A Very Special Edition on Amazon Alexa. The trailer features comedian Keegan-Michael Key getting completely carried away playing the game, swiping everything off of his table while using the unrelenting force shout “Fus Ro Dah.”
Most people thought the game was a joke. But, it’s no joke at all. Like everyone else, we were surprised to find out the game is real. Yes, you can actually download and play Skyrim: A Very Special Edition.
Skyrim for Alexa is a simple, text-based adventure game. It’s reminiscent of the old DOS text adventure games like Infocom and other text-based games from the ’80s, except it’s voice-controlled, so you listen to the game through a speaker and input your commands vocally.
While playing Skyrim: A Very Special Adventure, Skyrim fans will recognize some of the features and lingo in the game, like some of the races, enemies, weapons, and abilities. For instance, you’ll probably come across someone from the Red Guard race, or maybe a Khajiit warrior, or possibly a Dark Elf. The game also frequently asks if you want to use shout. Unlike the console iterations of Skyrim, however, you can’t customize your character, open your inventory, or choose the specific spell you want to use during combat.
Although you don’t have a ton of control over what’s happening in the game, it is fun to imagine yourself traveling through the universe. With a little imagination, you can picture yourself in the world of Skyrim, going on quests as Alexa describes them to you.
To play Skyrim: A Very Special Edition on your Echo Spot or another Amazon Alexa device, you just have to follow a few simple steps.
Step 1: Go to your Amazon account and search Alexa skills for “Skyrim: A Very Special Edition.” You’ll also want to make sure your Echo device is connected to your Amazon account.
Step 2: Enable the skill.
Step 3: Say “Alexa, open Skyrim”
Step 4: Start your text-based adventure.
The game starts by telling you that you’re standing at a crossroad, and it asks you which of two options you want to explore. Do you want to explore a fortified town or a foggy dock? If you start the game over, it may give you two different options, like an isolated shack or an ancient stone. As you play on, you’ll encounter enemies. When you encounter an enemy, your main options are to attack the enemy with a weapon, cast a spell, use a shout, or flee the scene.
Throughout the game, you’ll notice Alexa has a lot of funny quips. For instance, if you choose the flee option, Alexa may say something like “you scamper off with your tail between your legs, no need to mention this to anyone.” Thanks Alexa, we feel much better now.
If you exit the game, it will start you back at the beginning of the quest you were on when you left. It may say something like, “you open your quest journal, and you were helping a dark elf…” to remind you of your quest.
If you want to go into battle without an Echo device, no worries. Here’s how to play Skyrim: A Very Special Edition on your smartphone:
Step 2: Login into your Amazon Account, search Alexa Skills for ‘Skyrim: A Very Special Edition,’ and enable the skill.
Step 3: Tap the Alexa button in the upper-right corner of the Amazon App. If using the Alexa App, the Alexa circle is located at the bottom.
Step 4: Say “Alexa, Open Skyrim.”
Step 5: Begin your adventure.
Don’t expect the Alexa version of Skyrim to be anything like Skyrim Special Edition. It’s not even close. We may even go as far as to say that the game is a de-evolution back about 20 or 30 years. It offers limited choices and very limited user control. You can ask very basic questions, like “what’s my health?” and Alexa will tell you “your health is 95.”
But, other than Alexa answering very basic questions and offering you a few options to choose from in situations throughout the game, you’re kind of just along for the adventure. But, that doesn’t mean it’s not fun to try.
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